Eco Rating Hotel Restaurant Maya Luna
|Name of property||Hotel Restaurant Maya Luna Majahual|
|Person completing this form||Carolien van Santvoord|
|Address of property||Coastal Road Majahual-Xcalak, Km 5.2,|
|Phone number||00 52 (1) 9838360905|
|Web site||Hotel Maya Luna|
|Type of property||Hotel Restaurant Eco resort|
|Number of bungalows||4|
|Maximum number of guests||16|
|Eco ratings, certifications, awards||Eco Tropical Resorts Eco Rating: 4 out of 5|
- Do you have a written environmental or social sustainability policy? YES
NOTE: Mexican law demands an environmental impact study with
building and maintenance prescriptions that minimize the impact of
the operation on the environment. Maya Luna`s Impact Study was
approved by the Ministry of Environment in 2003. The study,
in Spanish, contains 150 pages with strict rules for building,
maintenance and expanding the operations of Hotel Maya Luna.
- Do you have a written environmental management system? NO
Describe the property: Hotel Maya Luna is a small beach resort located at the Costa Maya in the south-eastern part of the Yucatan peninsula. The four guest-bungalows and the main-building (restaurant, bar, terraces) are all on the beach-front site of the property (66m beachfront – 120m deep). All bungalows have a beach- and a roof-terrace. One bungalow is specially designed for handicapped guests. We are proud of the beautiful gardens that surround the hotel that is owned by our Mexican company.
Describe the location: In front of Maya Luna passes the second largest barrier reef in the world named “The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef”. Guests can snorkel and dive from the beach. The small, unpaved coastal road behind the property connects us to the small village (1000 inhabitants) of Majahual (3 km) where we can do our daily shopping. The closest big town is Chetumal at 140 km. The international airport of Cancun is at 350 km. Tours to several Mayan sites are organized on a daily base.
Describe WHY you made the decision to develop an eco resort: We are living on a beautiful beach between the coral reef and the mangrove swamps. Our hotel/home belongs to one of the most fragile ecosystems in the world. Therefore we feel that we should do all the possible, being divers ourselves, to protect the sea, coral and mangroves around us and to avoid turning Costa Maya into a mass tourism destination.
Introduction to the Butterfly Club’s Eco Rating
The Butterfly Club Eco Rating has five equally-weighted categories:
- Recycling and waste;
- Land and nature conservation; and
Each category has five levels, designated by one to five butterflies. Through self assessment, resort operators completing this rating will determine their own levels within each category based on their responses to items listed below.
Two categories – energy and water – have similar rating systems with Levels 1 and 2 addressing conservation of existing resources, and Levels 3, 4 and 5 addressing creation of renewable energy or capturing water.
Level five in every category also requires written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record consumption; (2) test and apply additional conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific targets. We require a copy of your policies if you achieve level 5 in any category.
The main building and the bungalows are powered by a solar energy system which provides 80% of the energy needed daily. In the evening we run a diesel generator to provide electricity to the restaurant and to use the water pumps to fill the water tanks on top of the roof terraces. To save energy, we use energy efficient lamps and fans in the main building and the rooms. All rooms have 24 hours of electricity.
Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:
_Y_ use natural air circulation and fans, not air conditioners
_Y_ use natural light during the day
_Y_ minimize use of fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines and equipment
_Y_ use “on demand” or solar heating for hot water
_Y_ no air dry clothes/linens (use laundry in village)
_Y_ wash dishes by hand
_Y_ use energy efficient appliances and electronics
_Y _ use low wattage fluorescent or LED light bulbs
_Y_ change linens, tablecloths, napkins upon request
_Y_ switch off lights when not used
Other energy conservation activities?
Solar lamps in garden and on roofs.
Level 1 = four or fewer energy conservation activities
Level 2 = five or more energy conservation activities
Levels 3, 4 and 5 – renewable energy: Indicate proportion (%) of energy from each source:
_00%__ public utility
Other energy sources? NA.
How were these proportions developed?
Level 3 = renewable energy is employed and is less than 1/3 of all energy
Level 4 = renewable energy constitutes 1/3 – 2/3 of all energy
Level 5 = renewable energy constitutes 2/3 or more of all energy. In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record energy consumption; (2) test and apply additional energy conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific energy targets.
Your Energy Level (select 1 – 5) = 4
For its water supply hotel Maya Luna (80%) uses rain water falling on the roofs of the bungalows and main building to be collected in large basements under the terraces.
The water is then pumped up to plastic tanks on the roofs and gravity brings it down to showers, sinks and toilets. In the dry season water (20%) is brought in by trucks.
Waste water – Instead of using separated septic tanks for each bungalow, a large basement was constructed connecting all bungalows including the main building. The basement consists of different compounds with filters installed. After filtering the water is used for irrigation by a network of long perforated pvc-tubes 20cm under the roots of the plants in our garden.
Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:
_Y_ low flow faucets and showerheads
_Y_ low water use toilets
_Y_ change linens, towels, tablecloths, and napkins upon request
_Y_ use table mats that can be wiped and not laundered
_N _use biodegradable laundry detergent, dish soap and hand soap
_Y_No swimming pool. Treat swimming pool with chlorine-free processes
Other water conservation activities? Please list.
Level 1 = three or fewer water conservation activities
Level 2 = four or more water conservation activities
Levels 3, 4 and 5 – capture and treat fresh water and manage waste water. Capture water: Indicate proportion (%) of water from each source:
_N——reuse gray (only for irrigation)
_15%__public utility (water-trucks from village)
Other water sources? Fresh drinking water is provided by 20-liters jerry cans in the bungalows and kitchen brought in from the village.
Fresh water treatment: how is captured fresh water treated?
_Y_ naturally. Indicate method: paper-filters between cisterns and roof tanks.
_N_ chemically. List chemicals used:
Waste water management:
_Y_ septic tanks
_N_ other? List methods:
Level 3: Water is captured (from springs, rivers, rain or prior use) and constitutes less than 1/3 of water from all sources. Water is treated chemically. Water disposal does not minimize damage to coral reefs and rain forests
Level 4: Captured water constitutes 1/3 to 2/3 of all water. Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests
Level 5: Captured water constitutes more than 2/3 of all water. Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests. In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record water consumption; (2) test and apply additional water conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific water targets.
Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Water Level 5 (required).
Your Water Level (select 1 – 5): 4
Recycling and waste
We separate organic, paper, glass and aluminium waste and try to keep it out of the hands of the garbage-truck that passes once a week and that would throw all separated waste together again. Compost is used as a fertilizer in our gardens.
Check all that apply:
_Y_ use durable service items, e.g. cups, glasses, dishes, tableware, storage items
_Y_ buy fresh and local to reduce packaging and emissions from transportation
_Y_ purchase in bulk to reduce packaging
_Y_ recycle paper, glass, plastic, aluminum
_Y_ minimize emissions from fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines & equipment
_Y_ zero waste in the kitchen
_N_ serve local water, not bottled water (20 litres jerricans for guests)
_N_ cleaning products are biodegradable
_Y_ compost organic matter
Other methods to recycle waste?
Level 1 = four or fewer recycling activities
Level 2 = five recycling activities
Level 3 = six recycling activities
Level 4 = seven recycling activities
Level 5 = eight or more recycling activities. In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record recycling and waste; (2) test and apply additional recycling and waste conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific recycling and waste targets.
Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Recycling and Waste Level 5 (required).
Your Recycling and Waste Level (select 1 – 5): 4
Land and nature conservation
We are proud of our beautiful garden; full of palm trees, local plants, flowers, fruit and other trees. We use the sea grass that washes ashore abundantly every day as fertilizer for a lot of plants and trees. As we are living in a hurricane area, we are almost every year hit by a big storm that makes it necessary to rebuild or reorganize the gardens. Living in a tropical climate with the threat of the beagle that kills the palm trees we are forced to use a few chemicals to keep the gardens healthy.
Check all that apply:
_Y_ minimize tree removal when building
_N_ use only botanical (plant-based) herbicides & pesticides in garden & grounds
_Y_ maintain organic gardens as food source for resort
_N_ use biodegradable cleaning products
_Y_ minimize external illumination
_Y_ take additional specific actions to preserve the local habitat.
_Y_ Landscaping with native plants
Please list actions and projects:
Level 1: one or two land and nature conservation activities
Level 2: three land and nature conservation activities
Level 3: four land and nature conservation activities
Level 4: five land and nature conservation activities
Level 5: six or more land and nature conservation activities. In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record land and nature conservation activities; (2) test and apply additional land and nature conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific land and nature conservation targets.
Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Land and Nature Conservation Level 5 (required).
Your Land and Nature Conservation Level (select 1 – 5): 4
We have a very small staff of two persons. They come from surrounding villages and Maya Luna provides them free accommodation and food. For members of our staff who did not finish high school, we offer the possibility to join a special educational program for adults. Maya Luna received a special diploma for joining this program.
Maya Luna supports community activities with small gifts or free meals to beach-cleaning-days, auctions for local schools and road-maintenance. Our profits are very low and 75 % goes to salaries of local staff, maintenance of the installations and gardens, extending solar panel systems.
Check all activities that apply:
_Y_ hire staff residing near the resort 100 % local nationals
_Y_ use local suppliers 40 % purchased goods produced locally
_Y_ re-invest resort income locally 75 % income re-invested locally
_Y_ pay above local prevailing wage
_Y_ pay into local social security
_Y_ provide health insurance or coverage
_Y_ use regular staff meetings to educate staff about sustainable processes throughout the resort, in the garden, with waste disposal, etc
_N_ provide educational awareness programs for staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the local community
_Y_ provide sustainable transport to work for staff (living in-house)
_Y_ take additional specific actions to support the local community. Gifts to beach-cleaning, road-maintenance and auctions for local schools..
_N_ Have enrolled your staff in any personal green training/certification schemes such as ecohelpline.com green leaf certification.
Level 1: one or two community activities
Level 2: three to five community activities
Level 3: six to seven community activities
Level 4: eight to nine community activities
Level 5: ten or more community activities. In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record community activities; (2) test and apply additional methods to support the community; and (3) work towards specific community targets.
Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Community Level 5 (required).
Your Community Level (select 1 – 5): 4
YOUR OVERALL ECO SCORE (add your level for each category and divide by 5and enter the result with the decimal point, e.g. 3.6): 4
We have three final questions which are not part of the eco rating:
- Please describe your single most important eco achievement: We constructed and maintain the Maya Luna installations with respect for the very fragile eco-system we are living in keeping the negative impacts as low as possible. We build awareness under guests and staff about the uniqueness and fragility of the surrounding coral-seagrass-beach-mangrove ecosystems and the rules to respect and to preserve this beautiful environment.
- Indicate additional sustainable practices that you plan to institute within the next 6 months: As soon as the financial situation of Maya Luna will permit it we want to put in solar-hot-water-systems and composting toilets.
- Is there anything else you would like to add to this eco rating: It`s not easy to comply with all the demands you can put to a eco-hotel, especially now tourism to Mexico and profits are low. So, we had to adapt to a step-by-step approach keeping in mind that all small-daily-activities to attend the guests and uphold the installations and garden can be done with respect to our environment. .